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Mostly Adequate

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 21, 2020
13
16
UK
My sister’s got an M1 Mac on the way and tasked me with helping set it up for her. Her outgoing Mac is a slightly aged Intel iMac with a hard disc rather than an SSD.

I’m wondering how to transfer her existing stuff – external hard disc with Time Machine on the old Mac then connect to the new one, or just set up the M1 Mac and transfer folders with a USB stick with specific data (document files, iTunes library, etc)? Presumably the latter will be ‘cleaner’ and faster? Or is there another method that I’m not thinking of?
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,105
12,255
If you have a tm backup available, that's probably the easiest way.
Just make sure it's up-to-date before you power on the NEW Mac for the very first time.

Then, take the new Mac out of the box and put it on the table.

Then, connect the tm backup drive (do you have a USBa-to-USBc adapter?).

NOW press the power on button for the first time (or if it's a laptop, open the lid).

Begin clicking through the setup. At the appropriate moment, setup assistant will ask if you wish to migrate from another drive. YES, you do.

So "point the way" for setup assistant to the tm backup, and then... let setup assistant "digest everything" Be patient, takes a little time.

SA will present you with a list of stuff that can be migrated. It's up to you and your sister to determine whether to migrate all of it, or just some of it.

Then, turn SA loose and let it do its thing.
When done, you should see her login screen.
 

Daverich4

macrumors regular
Jan 13, 2020
100
25
If you have a tm backup available, that's probably the easiest way.
Just make sure it's up-to-date before you power on the NEW Mac for the very first time.

Then, take the new Mac out of the box and put it on the table.

Then, connect the tm backup drive (do you have a USBa-to-USBc adapter?).

NOW press the power on button for the first time (or if it's a laptop, open the lid).

Begin clicking through the setup. At the appropriate moment, setup assistant will ask if you wish to migrate from another drive. YES, you do.

So "point the way" for setup assistant to the tm backup, and then... let setup assistant "digest everything" Be patient, takes a little time.

SA will present you with a list of stuff that can be migrated. It's up to you and your sister to determine whether to migrate all of it, or just some of it.

Then, turn SA loose and let it do its thing.
When done, you should see her login screen.
When I set up my current Mac Mini it was from a Time Machine backup of my laptop and I ended up with the same administrator and computer name as the laptop. Is there a way to setup the new computer and operating system from scratch and just use the Time Machine backup for the programs?
 

lcubed

macrumors 6502a
Nov 19, 2020
540
324
the computer name is easy to change and having the same administrator avoids permissions issues on the new machine.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,105
12,255
Dave wrote:
"When I set up my current Mac Mini it was from a Time Machine backup of my laptop and I ended up with the same administrator and computer name as the laptop. Is there a way to setup the new computer and operating system from scratch and just use the Time Machine backup for the programs?"

The operating system IS NEVER TRANSFERRED by setup assistant.
It wasn't when you previously used SA.

Other things are:
- applications
- accounts
- data
- user settings.
 

MarineBand5524

macrumors 6502
Dec 17, 2021
339
113
My sister’s got an M1 Mac on the way and tasked me with helping set it up for her. Her outgoing Mac is a slightly aged Intel iMac with a hard disc rather than an SSD.

I’m wondering how to transfer her existing stuff – external hard disc with Time Machine on the old Mac then connect to the new one, or just set up the M1 Mac and transfer folders with a USB stick with specific data (document files, iTunes library, etc)? Presumably the latter will be ‘cleaner’ and faster? Or is there another method that I’m not thinking of?
I always set up my new machines as brand new. I reinstall all the apps and then hook up an external HD and push everything over to the new machine what isn't there or I need to have.
 

Daverich4

macrumors regular
Jan 13, 2020
100
25
Dave wrote:
"When I set up my current Mac Mini it was from a Time Machine backup of my laptop and I ended up with the same administrator and computer name as the laptop. Is there a way to setup the new computer and operating system from scratch and just use the Time Machine backup for the programs?"

The operating system IS NEVER TRANSFERRED by setup assistant.
It wasn't when you previously used SA.

Other things are:
- applications
- accounts
- data
- user settings.
Is it possible to rename the User and still retain passwords and anything else relating to a specific User? My Mac mini started out as an exact mirror of my laptop (where the Time Machine backup came from) so the User is named macbookpro which is not what I want passed on to the Mac Ultra I'm about to purchase.
 

MarineBand5524

macrumors 6502
Dec 17, 2021
339
113
Is it possible to rename the User and still retain passwords and anything else relating to a specific User? My Mac mini started out as an exact mirror of my laptop (where the Time Machine backup came from) so the User is named macbookpro which is not what I want passed on to the Mac Ultra I'm about to purchase.
yeah it's just the local machine name, you can go into settings and rename.
 

Daverich4

macrumors regular
Jan 13, 2020
100
25
yeah it's just the local machine name, you can go into settings and rename.
That's the Home directory and while I've found directions for how to change it there are just as many warnings about not doing it. I'm trying to find out a way to change it when I'm setting up a new computer from my Time Machine backup.
 

satcomer

Suspended
Feb 19, 2008
9,115
1,972
The Finger Lakes Region
I say going from intel Mac DON'T transfer applications because those programs are way too old now! Just transfer saved email boxes, videos and Music! Setup the Mail manually and use the serial numbers to buy updated software you need that is either Universal or Silicon! Try to stay away Intel only programs if you wing it!
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,105
12,255
"Is it possible to rename the User and still retain passwords and anything else relating to a specific User?"

I would STRONGLY ADVISE you NOT to attempt this unless you're absolutely sure you know what you're doing and what could go wrong. And how to "fix things" if they do go wrong on you.

It can really mess an account up...!
 

MarineBand5524

macrumors 6502
Dec 17, 2021
339
113
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